The new harvest season will be here before you know it, and there’s still time to sign up for a CT Grown CSA! By joining a Community Supported Agriculture program this winter, you’ll receive regular shares of fresh, nutritious food for months to come.

Read more about your CSA options in our latest newsletter, or visit one of these resources to learn more:

It’s a season for families to come together and celebrate the holiday spirit. And when everyone from the grandparents on down to little grandchildren are together under one roof, that means it’s time for another big feast! 

CT Grown products are a great choice for the family gathering. You’ll also need something to wet your whistle, though, and Connecticut’s farmers have you covered there as well! Check out these options, and raise a glass to CT Grown for the holiday season!


Like many traditional holiday dishes or beverages, eggnog was once considered a luxury due to the priciness of many of its ingredients. Families would splurge on the drink — and other delicious items — and hold toasts to wealth and prosperity in the new year.

Although eggnog is no longer considered a luxury, these toasts have remained — along with the seasonal availability of the beverage, which could conceivably be offered year-round. Eggnog is a thick, sweet drink that mixes milk, cream, sugar, egg yolks, and whipped egg whites. 

Several Connecticut dairy farms get in on the holiday spirit by producing eggnog at this time of year. You can enjoy it plain, or spike it with alcohol like rum or bourbon. 

This is also the only time of year you can test it out in other ways! Try eggnog as a coffee creamer, or use it as a milk substitute in recipes for waffles, pancakes, and cookies.


Spanish for “little coconut,” coquito is also referred to as Puerto Rican Eggnog due to its popularity on the island. As a tropical tradition, many of its ingredients — including coconut milk, coconut cream, and vanilla — aren’t exactly CT Grown.

However, you can still use yolks from locally sourced eggs and mix them with condensed milk (a product invented in Connecticut, incidentally) to make a thick base for this drink. Add in some rum from a Connecticut distillery as well!

Whiskeys and spirits 

Image courtesy of Winter Caplanson

A growing number of distilleries in Connecticut are giving residents and visitors a local option when it comes to bourbon, gin, rum, vodka, whiskey, and other spirits. These distilleries frequently partner with local farms to infuse their product with flavors like fruit and herbs.

During the holiday season, you can relax with warming drinks like a hot toddy, hot buttered rum (using CT Grown butter, of course), spiked hot chocolate, or a nor’easter — a winter spin on the Moscow Mule that includes maple syrup in the mix.


Some of Connecticut’s 45 farm wineries close their doors for the season when colder temperatures arrive, but many are happy to welcome guests throughout the year. Pull up a seat in the cozy tasting room to enjoy some delicious vintages, and pick up a bottle or two as a gift.

Connecticut farm wines also work well for mulling to create a delicious, warm beverage on a holiday evening. Mulled wine is prepared with ingredients like oranges, honey, and spices for a wonderful evening libation.


Yes, the drink from the Christmas song! 

Traditionally held on Twelfth Night, wassailing involves a group of people visiting homes to sing festive tunes and wish the occupants good cheer. The homeowner rewards them with a small gift (a figgy pudding, perhaps) in exchange for the group’s blessings and a drink from the bowl of wassail they carried. In addition to the neighborhood strolls, wassailing ceremonies have also taken place in orchards to bless the trees before the next season.

Although caroling has largely replaced wassailing, the beverage remains a unique holiday offering — and one that can easily use CT Grown ingredients. Wassail is traditionally made with a base of cider, ale, or wine, which is then mulled with spices.


Connecticut’s craft breweries are in operation year-round. But once winter arrives and patrons abandon the beer garden for the toasty taproom, the preferred styles shift to heartier fare.

“Winter warmers” such as porters and stouts typically use darker malts, have a higher alcohol by volume (ABV), and are more filling. In addition, many breweries celebrate the season by creating holiday ales with ingredients like cinnamon, orange peel, and other flavors found in mulled drinks.

You may also find a greater availability of imperial beer options, which have stronger, heartier flavors that may be further enhanced through barrel aging. These beers also have a very high ABV, so be sure to drink responsibly. 


This autumn favorite is still available during the holidays, though this is also your last call for the delicious beverage. Apple cider is a dark, sweet beverage produced by compressing apple mash; since it lacks preservatives, it has a shorter shelf life and more seasonal availability compared to apple juice.

Warm up with apple cider on a cold evening by mulling it with honey, maple syrup, or spices. You can also look for some of the hard cider options offered by many orchards, which often have varieties pairing the alcoholic beverage with flavors like honey and ginger.

Milk for Santa

You can’t forget Saint Nick this time of year. Locally produced milk is available from 87 dairy farms in Connecticut, and leaving out a glass of milk for Santa ensures that he’ll get 13 essential nutrients with every serving.

December 9, 2023 @ 9:00 AM 2:00 PM

This event aims to bring together Connecticut’s agricultural producers, construction industry, innovators in materials and manufacturing, regulators, and community groups working on regenerative urban developing and agriculture to discuss possibilities and avenues to further circular regenerative hemp production, construction and use.

The program will discuss topics including developing farm capacity for hemp, adding value to agricultural land use, and BIPOC liberation through circular economic development.

24 Hyde Ave.
Vernon, Connecticut 06066 United States
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March 23 @ 8:00 AM 8:00 PM

CT NOFA is proud to present our 42nd Winter Conference, featuring a series of virtual workshops on March 20-21 in the lead up to our full day, in-person gathering and celebration on March 23, 2024 at Eastern Connecticut State University, in partnership with their Institute of Sustainability.

$55 – $160
83 Windham Street
Willimantic, Connecticut 06226 United States
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March 14 @ 9:00 AM 5:00 PM

The CT Compost Alliance is excited to announce that the first CT Compost Conference. This informative day will include keynote speakers, breakout sessions, networking, a catered lunch, and exhibitors. Attendees will benefit from a variety of themed breakout sessions, providing education on composting related to the basics, home, farm, municipal, schools, and medium to large scale operations. The event will highlight how composting can benefit local communities, businesses, the environment, and improve climate resiliency.  

270 Mohegan Ave. Parkway
New London, Connecticut 06320 United States
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January 29 @ 9:00 AM 3:00 PM

Presentations on the state of the grainshed, agronomic data, and where we see the future of Northeast grains going. Agenda topics include grain varieties in our region, local grain in schools, regenerative grain farming, and more. The symposium features speakers from local farms and the Universty of Vermont Extension.

Registration is $30 for virtual members, $50 for members and virtual non-members, and $80 for in-person non-members.

100 Royall Street
Canton, Massachusetts 02021 United States
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January 9 @ 8:00 AM 3:30 PM

This event is a valuable resource for local farmers who are seeking connections in the state as well as knowledge about local issues and opportunities. A trade show will be held throughout the conference, and 4 CEU pesticide recertification credits are available.

Registration is $40 before noon on December 20th, 2023 and $60 afterward. Registration for matriculated students with a valid ID is $30.

2110 Hillside Road
Storrs, Connecticut 06269 United States
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December 6, 2023 @ 9:00 AM 3:00 PM

This UConn Extension workshop, in partnership with USDA RMA, will
assist producers in understanding the seasonal risks, challenges and
opportunities associated with our changing climate. We will outline
many of the strategies that have emerged for:

Examples and tools suitable for a wide variety of kinds and farms sizes
will be included.

You will be provided with a template and tools to:

Participants will also learn of tools and programs available from USDA
RMA, USDA FSA, USDA NRCS, and the CT Department of Agriculture.

1066 Saybrook Road
Haddam, Connecticut 06438 United States
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November 21, 2023 @ 8:00 AM 5:00 PM

Local Work Groups are public forums to gather information from residents about natural resource concerns in their area. The gatherings offer a chance to shape federal and state natural resource assistance programs.

Convened by local conservation districts, Local Work Group participants include farmers, forest and other landowners, town officials and staff, community leaders, Councils of Government, NRCs, other state and federal agencies, and NGOs.

The schedule of upcoming Local Work Groups includes:

November 29, 2023 @ 8:00 AM 5:00 PM

Join UConn Extension Solid Ground program in a new ONLINE course that will help you understand the best practices for your farm in a changing climate.  Course includes expert instructors in various fields implementing climate smart agriculture practices, tools under $2000 that are suggested for use, virtual field trips and more.

Topics include: soil health, composting, using plastic and fabric mulches, managing water on the farm, biological pest control, etc.

Running fully online and asynchronously, so learn at your own pace. Course begins November 29th and runs through February 28th, 2024.